Checking My Privilege

I started this blog to discuss issues and send my rants out into the world in hope that I am not the only person who thinks the way I think sometimes. Also to give my Facebook friends a break! As well as share awesome products and any tips I come across (of course!). I’m not an angry keyboard warrior, but I am able to discuss and write about things other than which lipstick you should be wearing (although lipstick is pretty important!).

I think it’s easy to get sidetracked and lose yourself a bit when writing online, you can get caught up trying to please everybody and censoring the things you publish. It’s also a bit awkward if you happen to represent any companies or brands on your blog. But I believe in open discussion. It’s good to open your mind to another persons perspective and be able to discuss things that some people are scared to say, but definitely thinking.

I realise it is a bit of a controversial topic, and while I don’t think this post is particularly offensive, I can only hope that it isn’t taken in the wrong way, but hey, this is the internet!

I’d like to discuss Privilege.

I’m sure you’ve seen this word thrown about on the internet more times than you’ve been Rick-Rolled.


‘Check your privilege’

‘He’s just a privileged, white, cis-gendered, hetero-normative male’

Okay, I made those quotes up, but you get the idea. It’s as if being a straight white male is a bad thing.

I came across an article suggesting that if you are privileged then you don’t have a right to comment. Oh really? The article included this lovely little game:

635831212189741040436280247_Check your privilege Bingo.jpg

I feel I have to point out that this was not a joke post. Apparently you can only feel hard done by if you are a fat black ugly gay female! This kind of stuff makes me so angry. It may have been made as a joke at first (surely?), but this article used it in a serious way. You actually can’t have anything going for you because if you do, you’re seen as a privileged person. I haven’t used this article as my only source. I see it more and more online now and have come across countless articles. People are calling others out constantly because they have something that’s seen as good about them.

When it comes to the bingo game, which is basically a list of the things I have seen people get called out on, firstly, there are a lot that people have no choice over in there! But there are some you do! And some that are just ridiculous! Again…this is not a joke! This person (and other people) actually discussed these things.

Human? I’m sorry what?
Not a red-head!? Go love your red-headed selves. I don’t get it, is it a bad thing?
First-world? So everyone with a computer in their home in the West should stop talking about privilege because they have it – great! Maybe that’ll stop it.

The ones that annoyed me more than anything though, were the ones that say educated and no criminal record. Yeah I’m privileged to have not been a criminal? You’re not born one! How about don’t commit crimes?

Also, you can choose to be educated. If you have a computer in front of you in order to share stupid pictures on the internet,then you can use it to learn. I understand that in some countries it is more difficult to get into some schools and universities. But intelligence is not all academic achievements. Some of the most intelligent people I know quit school early. They just never stopped learning!

Support mainstream political parties? What about when the non-mainstream one you like becomes mainstream. Is that not the plan with politics?

Anyway, moving on from the idiotic bingo game…

I’m not going to deny prejudice or racism . Of course it exists! And of course it shouldn’t!   I am so glad that things have moved forward in the last couple of hundred years, but there is still a way to go I think.

Yes, of course equality needs to be fought for, but do you think there is no inequality between other white males?

As you may know, I am a straight, white female. Lame huh, how privileged. I may have been born with a pale white face, but I can assure you, it didn’t get me where I am today (which is not anywhere amazing to be honest – privilege isn’t working out for me!)

That’s not to say I am not at all privileged. I have been born in a great country, I am surrounded by good family and friends and am lucky enough to be in good health. I don’t think this is a ‘privilege’ in the sense of the term being used though.  Everyone has something to feel thankful for.

I know I’ve got feminism as my card to play, but you know what? I don’t want it! I want to get places and do things on my own merit. Not as part of some company’s quota or to be seen as a radical alternative to a male. Not because society decided it was my time,  but because I worked hard enough to get there. There was a time when women had to show they could do just as well as males, and now we’re there. In the same jobs! That’s a massive achievement, however ridiculous it may be that it wasn’t always like that. I am not unaware of wage gaps or everyday sexism and believe it has to be fought for. But I’m not going to whinge at a guy because he offered me a drink. I’ll take that drink!

Side story: R and I were out one night for a quiet drink and when I went to the bar, an older man offered me a drink. I explained I was out with my partner and getting us both drinks so it was fine. He bought us both a cocktail. ‘What a gent’, I thought. Then we chatted and asked what he did and he worked in banking. He then proceeded to ignore me for the duration of the conversation and I’m pretty sure it is because I was a mere female!
While slightly offensive, I actually found it funny, because I’m pretty secure in myself. Just because he saw me that way, it doesn’t mean I am that way. Also, I wasn’t going to call the guy out on it and just be rude. I made the odd little comment about how I can discuss things too, then shut up and sipped my cocktail like a good girl. Banking is boring anyway!

What I don’t like about this ‘privileged’ buzzword, is that apparently a white male is only getting places because of it. He couldn’t possibly have worked hard his entire life to get where he is or become the person he has become. Any opinion he has doesn’t matter because he’s just a white male and doesn’t understand the real world. Does anyone else see how ridiculous this is? How absolutely backwards it is to put another person down because of their experiences  and the way they were born when that is the very thing that people who use the dreaded word are fighting for?
What about the white men that aren’t doing too well. Or do they not count?

I think what’s even worse is how white males have even adopted the word. People online are currently debating their guilt and shame at being born ‘privileged’. Are you joking? Guilty because of genes? That’s a new low.

There are young white women online calling other young white women privileged because they believe their opinions only come from living a perfect dream life (even though they have no idea because they’re all strangers!) Yay, feminism? The worst culprits seem to be the ones who label themselves as feminists!

I work hard, I am independent and I’m pretty strong (mentally, physically I’m weak as hell!). None of that came to me because of the colour of my skin and I don’t feel that being female has stopped me from doing anything that I want to do either.

I do believe that class, age, race and gender can make a difference in the way that you’re treated and think it’s disgusting. Everyone has experienced it at some point though. That’s when its time to show you’re better than that. Prove people wrong! Or just ignore the ignorant fools and get on with your life the way you want to.

When you tell people they’re privileged, you are doing the exact same thing you accuse people of! You’re perpetuating discrimination because you, ‘privilege’ word user, are discriminating too!

With regards to racism, feminism, and all the other isms, I’d rather celebrate how far we’ve come and rise above it.
Trust me I am a fighter of equality and care about all people being treated well. I stand up for others and am never afraid to go against a group of people to fight for what I believe in.

However, you do not become a higher being by putting people down. And you’re certainly not making a difference, just like I’m not, by sitting at a desk on some fancy technology in most likely a pretty nice home attacking anyone online with an opinion that differs from yours.

Before you go ranting and telling people to check their privilege, go away and check your own. We’re all here and we’re lucky to be. Everyone has a hard time and goes through things. Life is hard! Its how you come out of those times that make you the person you are.